Leeds City Council's new faces after local elections

Elected councillors for Kirkstall, from the left, Hannah Bithell, Fiona Venner and John Illingworth.
Elected councillors for Kirkstall, from the left, Hannah Bithell, Fiona Venner and John Illingworth.

Plenty of new faces will form the make-up of Leeds City Council after the local elections.

Voters picked fresh candidates from various parties to represent them after going to the polls on Thursday in a year which saw many members stand down from duty or lose seats.

Coun Peter Carlill, left.

Coun Peter Carlill, left.

Labour’s Peter Carlill received 3,086 votes to gain a seat in the Calverley and Farsley Tory stronghold – Leeds Conservative leader Coun Andrew Carter’s ward.

Read more: Local Election 2018: Full results from Leeds
In a speech after the result was announced at the First Direct Arena, Coun Carlill said: “I’m very proud to have been elected to represent the area that I love.

“And I’m very proud to have been elected the first Labour councillor for Calverley and Farsley for nearly 25 years.

“Thank you to a lot of the members in this area who have worked for many years to make this ward as close as it is, and we know it was very close tonight.”

The new Conservative Pudsey councillors, Mark Harrison, left, and Simon Seary.

The new Conservative Pudsey councillors, Mark Harrison, left, and Simon Seary.

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Fellow Labour member Hannah Bithell, who won 3,977 votes, became Kirkstall’s new councillor after party colleague and former deputy council leader, Lucinda Yeadon, stood down.

Another Labour gain was made by Jessica Lennox in Cross Gates and Whinmoor after she swiped the seat of Janette Walker, who defected from the party to become an Independent last year.

After the result, Coun Lennox told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “As a young woman with a family in a suburb outside the city, I saw lots of things I wanted to work on.”

Two new Conservative councillors were picked for Pudsey - a council ward controlled by Labour for three decades - as veteran Mick Coulson lost his post and former colleague Josephine Jarosz had stepped down.

Read more: VIDEO: Harrogate Conservatives increase majority by 9% in council elections
Tories Simon Seary and Mark Harrison, lifelong residents of the west Leeds town, looked visibly overwhelmed by the shock result, and admitted the double success came as a surprise.

Coun Seary said: “We knew it was going to be a close battle - it’s against 30 years of history.”

Coun Wyn Kidger was elected to Morley South at the expense of fellow Morley Borough Independent Robert Finnigan, who could not beat the votes of Labour and Co-operative member Coun Neil Dawson.